Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Few Fun Things!

School is in full swing around our place! We are really enjoying ourselves this year. We are using Alpha Omega's Horizon and LifePac for our core subjects. As for the electives, we have ventured out on our own to discover new ways of diving into learning. I thought it would be fun to share some of the things we have been doing (at least the ones that I remembered to take pictures of).

My 9 year old daughter holds a book club at our house once a month. We always plan an activity to go along with the book while they discuss what they've read. Last month they read Diary of a Wimpy Kid. They each made their own diary. They turned out so cute, we decided to make some of our own for around the house.

I have found that this has worked out so well for us. I always stock up on those great 15 cent spiral notebooks when they go on sale each fall at Wal-Mart. I find, however, that the kids grab a new one each time they want to write or draw, and we end up with a bunch of partially used notepads. With their personalized pads...they always want to grab their own! YAY! Problem solved...

Today we watched some amazing sand art videos on YouTube, and then put our own twist on it and made some fun creations. We started by dividing Fruit Loops into bags by color....
Then crushed them with rolling pins until they looked like sand...
I love all of the bright colors!...
Then we drew pictures on paper with pencils...
We filled in each space with glue and added our colored "sand"...
A Day at the Beach...
The World of Color (inspired by our upcoming Disney trip)...
We've got a bunch of "sand" left over and plan on layering it in bottles tomorrow, we will post pictures if it turns out :O)


After spending many adventures at the local bird refuges, the kids have decided they would love to learn more about birds! Our first lesson was on the characteristics of birds. The kids made a chart using things from around the house to show what makes a bird a bird.


They used feathers, sticks (for the nest), straws (for hollow bones), rocks (for eggs), a yellow paper beak, 2 leaves (for 2 wings), and then they drew their own picture to represent that birds are warm-blooded (Buddy drew a sun and a drop of blood). I felt like this activity really stuck with them, they seem to be remembering those characteristics very well during our discussions...

One of the science experiments that they enjoyed was the Blindfold Taste Test. There were 5 types of food to try, the idea being to prove that without your sense of sight and smell it is difficult to taste, showing that your senses work together, and how one will kick into high gear to compensate for the loss of the other...

One of the things that I really wanted to focus on when we began our homeschool journey (three years ago) was LUNCH, and the quality thereof. It has taken me this long to be consistent with my efforts, but we have made some positive changes and it feels great!! I have been tracking what we eat and taking pictures, I will be sharing some fun and healthy ideas in a few days. In the meantime here is a sneak peak...


Speaking of food, we have had a fantastic time with cooking lessons. I found a great little site with lessons to print (I will include all site links below). One of the lessons was all about how to read a recipe and follow directions. The kids made a cheese ball...
With all of our healthy eating during the week, we save the weekends for special treats. This was a fun thing to munch on with crackers and enjoy our family movie night...
I always love finding great educational websites, here are some links to the ones we are currently enjoying....
























3 comments:

Panamenos said...

so fun... I saw the bird characteristic page hanging on your fridge. Can I steal your idea? we are learning about animal characteristics in the next couple of weeks and have a field trip to a bird refuge next week! :) Thanks for sharing your great ideas!

Oh, and the soup today was yummy! Thanks!

Aly said...

Yes! Of course you can steal the idea! You can probably even make it better. We just did it so spur of the moment that we just had to grab what we had around the house. It would have been fun to use some little candy eggs or plastic easter eggs, maybe something a little more creative for wings...so many fun possibilities with a little extra thought! I would love to see what you come up with.

You're welcome on the soup! I forgot to tell you that it had some wild rice in it...looks questionable, LOL!

Panamenos said...

well, I'll probably mostly use stuff I have on hand but I will post the results on my second grade blog if I remember to take my camera. Was so frustrated today. Took my camera to take photos of a science project we did (a simple one, but still...) and the battery was completely dead...couldn't even take one photo. May have a couple of kids repeat the project tomorrow just to get the photos... But my battery is fully charged now! Argh!